OPERATING ON LAND OF ANOTHER
This subchapter is in no way to be construed as giving license or permission to cross or go on the property of another.
Any person operating an ATV upon the land of another shall stop and identify himself upon the request of the landowner or his duly authorized representative. Any person in violation shall be held accountable to the owner under existing laws and the penalty provided in Title 12, section 7901.
1. Operating an unregistered ATV. A person is guilty, except as provided in subsection 24, paragraphs A and B, of operating an unregistered ATV, if he operates an ATV which is not registered in accordance with section 7854.
1-A. Display of registration numbers. Every new ATV sold in Maine shall have a 3 1/2" x 6" space provided on the front and rear of the machine, as high above the tires as possible, for the vertical display of the registration numbers.
2. Operating an ATV upon a controlled access highway. A person is guilty, except as provided in subsection 24, paragraph C, of operating an ATV upon a controlled access highway, if he operates an ATV upon a controlled access highway or within the right-of-way limits of a controlled access highway.
3. Unlawfully operating an ATV on a snowmobile trail. A person is guilty of unlawfully operating a vehicle on a snowmobile trail, if he operates any 4-wheel drive vehicle, dune buggy, ATV, motorcycle or any other motor vehicle, other than a snowmobile and appurtenant equipment, on snowmobile trails which are financed in whole or in part with funds from the Snowmobile Trail Fund, unless that use has been authorized by the landowner or his agent, or unless the use is necessitated by an emergency involving safety of persons or property.
4. Unlawfully operating an ATV on a private road. A person is guilty of unlawfully operating an ATV on a private road, if he operates an ATV upon any private road after having been forbidden to do so by the owner thereof, the owner's agent or a municipal official, either personally or by appropriate notices posted conspicuously on that road.
5. Operating an ATV on a public way. A person is guilty, except as provided in subsection 24, paragraph D, of operating an ATV on a public way, if he operates an ATV upon any portion of a public way maintained or utilized for the operation of conventional motor vehicles or upon the sidewalks of any public way. This subsection does not apply to ATV's registered with the Secretary of State under Title 29.
6. Failing to stop an ATV before entering a public way. A person is guilty of failing to stop an ATV before entering a public way, if he fails to bring an ATV to a complete stop before entering a public way.
7. Failing to yield right-of-way while operating an ATV. A person is guilty of failing to yield the right-of-way while operating an ATV, if he fails to yield the right-of-way to all other types of vehicular traffic while operating an ATV on a public way.
8. Crossing a closed bridge, culvert, overpass or underpass with an ATV. A person is guilty of crossing a closed bridge, culvert, overpass or underpass with an ATV, if he crosses with an ATV a bridge, culvert, overpass or underpass closed to ATV's by the Commissioner of Transportation. The commissioner may, following a public hearing, prohibit the crossing of an individual bridge, culvert, overpass or underpass, if he determines that that crossing or use of the public way is hazardous. Any bridge, culvert,
overpass or underpass closed by the commissioner shall be posted by appropriate notices.
9. Reckless operating on an ATV. A person is guilty of reckless operation of an ATV, if he operates any ATV in such a way as to recklessly create a substantial risk of serious bodily injury to another person.
10. Operating an ATV under the influence or with excessive blood-alcohol level. A person is guilty of a Class E crime if that person operates or attempts to operate any ATV while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or drugs or a combination of liquor and drugs; or while having 0.08% or more by weight of alcohol in that person's blood.
10-A. Failure to comply with duty to submit. A person is guilty of failure to comply with the duty to submit to and complete a blood-alcohol test under section 7860 if that person refuses to submit to or fails to complete a blood-alcohol test when requested to do so by a law enforcement officer who has probable cause to believe that the person operated or attempted to operate an ATV while under the influence of intoxicating liquor.
11. Operating an ATV to endanger. A person is guilty of operating an ATV to endanger, if he operates any ATV so as to endanger any person or property.
12. Operating an ATV at greater than reasonable and prudent speed. A person is guilty of operating an ATV at greater than a reasonable and prudent speed, if he operates any ATV except at a reasonable and prudent speed for the existing conditions.
13. Unlawfully operating an ATV while under age. A person is guilty of unlawfully operating an ATV while under age, if
A. That person is under the age of 10 years;
Notwithstanding this subsection, persons over the age of 10 years, who have successfully completed a training course approved by the department pursuant to section 7853, may cross public ways as permitted under subsection 24, paragraph D, subparagraph (1), provided that they are accompanied by an adult.
B. That person is under the age of 16 years and operates an ATV across any public way maintained for travel;
C. That person is under the age of 16 years and operates an ATV while unaccompanied by an adult.
A person is not guilty of unlawfully operating an ATV while under age if that person is operating on land which is owned by the parent or guardian of the operator.
13-A. Operating an ATV without a certificate of training. A person is guilty, except as provided in subsection 24, paragraph E, of operating an ATV without a certificate of training, if that person is under 16 years of age and operates an ATV without having successfully completed a training course approved by the department pursuant to section 7853.
14. Permitting an unaccompanied child to operate an ATV. A person is guilty, except as provided in subsection 24, paragraph E, of permitting an unaccompanied child to operate an ATV, if he permits a child under 16 years of age to operate any ATV, unless he is accompanied by an adult.
13-B. Operating an ATV without protective headgear. Notwithstanding Title 29-A, section 2083, a person is guilty of operating an ATV without protective headgear, if he is under 18 years of age and operates an ATV without protective headgear (must conform with minimum standards of construction and performance as prescribed by the American National Standards Institute specification Z90.1 or by the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No.218).
13-C. Carrying a passenger on an ATV without headgear. Notwithstanding Title 29-A, 2083, a person is guilty of carrying a passenger on an ATV without protective headgear, if that person carries a passenger under 18 years of age on an ATV and the passenger is not wearing protective headgear.
14-A. Permitting child under 10 years to operate ATV. A person is guilty, except as provided in subsection 24, of permitting a child under the age of 10 to operate an ATV, if that person permits a child under the age of 10 to operate an ATV.
15. Operating an ATV without a muffler. A person is guilty, except as provided in subsection 24, paragraph B, of operating an ATV without a muffler, if that person operates any ATV that is not equipped at all times with an effective and suitable muffling device on its engine to effectively deaden or muffle the noise of the exhaust.
A. Each ATV must meet noise emission standards of the United States Environmental Protection Agency and in no case exceed 82 decibels of sound pressure level at 50 feet on the "A" scale, as measured by the SAE standards J-192.
In addition to any penalties imposed under this subsection, the court may, subject to section 9321 and Title 17-A, chapter 54, order restitution for fire suppression costs incurred by state or municipal government entities in suppressing a fire caused by an ATV operating without a working spark arrester.
B. Each ATV must be equipped with a working spark arrester.
C. No person may modify the exhaust system of any ATV in any manner which will increase the noise emitted above the emission standard provided in paragraph A.
16. Operating an ATV with insufficient lights. A person is guilty, except as provided in subsection 24, paragraphs B and E-1, of operating an ATV with insufficient lights, if he operates an ATV which is not equipped as follows:
A. At least one headlight mounted on the front capable of casting a white beam for a distance of at least 100 feet directly ahead of the ATV.
17. Failure to use ATV lights. A person is guilty, except as provided in subsection 24, paragraph B, of failure to use lights, if he fails to use the lights required under subsection 16 during the period from 1/2 hour after sunset to 1/2 hour before sunrise; and at any time when, due to insufficient light or unfavorable atmospheric conditions caused by fog or otherwise, other persons, vehicles and other objects are not clearly discernible for a distance of 500 feet ahead.
B. At least one lamp mounted on the rear capable of displaying a red light which shall be visible at a
distance of at least 100 feet behind the ATV.
18. Unlawfully operating an ATV on railroad tracks. Except as provided in subsection 24, paragraph E-2, a person is guilty of unlawfully operating an ATV on railroad tracks if that person:
A. Operates any ATV along or adjacent and parallel to the tracks of any railroad within the limits of any railroad right-of-way without written permission from the railroad owning the right-of-way; or
B. Operates any ATV across the tracks of any railroad after having been forbidden to do so by the railroad owning the railroad right-of-way, or by an agent of that railroad, either personally or by appropriate notices posted conspicuously along the railroad right-of-way.
20. Operating too close to certain buildings. A person is guilty, except as provided in subsection 24, paragraph F of operating too close to a dwelling, hospital, nursing home, convalescent home or church, if he operates an ATV within 200 feet of any of those buildings.
21. Unlawfully permitting operation. A person is guilty of unlawfully permitting operation of an ATV, if he owns an ATV which is operated by another person in violation of any section of this subchapter. A person is guilty of unlawfully permitting operation of an ATV, if he is the parent or guardian responsible for the care of a minor under 18 years of age who operates an ATV in violation of
22. Failure to report accident. A person is guilty of failure to report an ATV accident, if that person
A. Is the operator of an ATV involved in any accident resulting in injuries requiring the services of a physician, in death of any person or in property damage to the estimated amount of $300 or more; some person acting for such an operator; or the owner of the involved ATV having knowledge of the accident,
should the operator of the ATV be unknown; and
B. Fails to give notice of the accident by the quickest means of communication, to a law enforcement officer available nearest to the place where the accident occurred.
22-A. Operating an ATV in a prohibited area. A person is guilty of operating an ATV in a prohibited area, if that person operates an ATV on a salt marsh, intertidal zone, marine sand beach, sand dune or any cemetery, burial place or burying ground or if that person operates an ATV on alpine tundra or on a freshwater marsh or bog, other than a trail designated for ATV use by the Department of
Conservation, when the ground is not frozen and sufficiently covered with snow to prevent direct damage to the vegetation.
23. Operating an ATV on crop land or pastureland. A person is guilty of operating an ATV on crop land or pastureland, if he operates an ATV on any crop land or pastureland without the permission of the owner or lessee. As used in this subsection, crop land means acreage in tillage rotation, land being cropped and land in bush fruits. Pastureland means acreage devoted to the production of
forage plants used for animal production.
24. Exceptions. The following exceptions apply to an ATV:
A. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection 1;
(NOTE: Only the Military Base issued registration is required when riding on the land owned by the Federal government. However, state, county or town owned roads pass through most Bases and a State
Registration is required when crossing such roads.)
(1) No registration is required for an ATV operated on land on which the owner lives or on lands on which he is domiciled, provided that the ATV is not operated elsewhere within the jurisdiction of this State;
(2) No registration is required for an ATV operated by a commercial ski area for the purpose of packing snow or for rescue operation thereon, unless the ATV is required to cross a public way during that operation; and
(3) ATV's owned and operated in this State by the Federal Government, the State or political subdivision of the State shall be exempt from registration fees, but shall be registered and required to display numbers.
B. Notwithstanding subsections 1, 15, 16 and 17, ATV's used exclusively for scheduled racing meets and operated solely on predefined race courses are exempt from the provisions of this subchapter concerning registration, mufflers and lights during the time of operation at these meets and at all pre-race practice at the location of the meet.
C. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection 2:
(1) Properly registered ATV's may cross controlled access highways by use of bridges over or roads under those highways, or by use of roads crossing control led access highways at grade; and
(2) The Commissioner of Transportation may issue special permits for designated crossings of controlled access highways.
D. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection 5:
(1) Properly registered ATV's may operate on a public way only the distance necessary, but in no case to exceed 300 yards on the extreme right of the traveled way for the purpose of crossing, as directly as possible, a public way, sidewalk or culvert.
(2) Properly registered ATV's may operate on a public way only the distance necessary, but in no case to exceed 500 yards, on the extreme right of the traveled way for the sole purpose of crossing, as directly as possible, a bridge, overpass or underpass, provided that that operation can be made in safety and that it does not interfere with traffic approaching from either direction on the public way;
(3) ATV's may operate on any portion of public ways when the public way has been closed in accordance with Title 23, section 2953;
(4) ATV's may operate on a public way which is not maintained or utilized for the operation of conventional motor vehicles, except that operation on the left side of the way shall be prohibited during the hours from sunset to sunrise;
(5) ATV's may be operated on streets and public ways during a period of emergency when the emergency has been so declared by a police agency having jurisdiction and when travel by conventional motor vehicles is not practicable; and
(6) ATV's may be operated on streets and public ways in special events of limited duration conducted according to a prearranged schedule, under a permit from the governmental unit having jurisdiction.
(7) An ATV may be operated on a public way on the extreme right of the travelled way by a law enforcement officer for the sole purpose of travelling between the place where the ATV is usually stored and an area to be patrolled by a law enforcement officer.
E. Notwithstanding subsections 13,13-A, and 14, those sub-sections do not apply on land which is owned by the parent or guardian of the operator.
E-1. Notwithstanding subsection 16, ATV's manufactured prior to January 1, 1991, without a headlight or taillight are exempt from the provisions of that subsection while being operated between the hours of sunrise and sunset.
E-2. Notwithstanding subsection 18, a person is not guilty of operating an all-terrain vehicle on railroad tracks if he is operating within the right-of-way of a portion of railroad line which has been officially abandoned under the authority of the Interstate Commerce Commission.
F. Notwithstanding subsection 20, that subsection does not apply in the following situations:
(1) When operating on public ways in accordance with subsection 5, 6, 7, and 8 and subsection 24, paragraph C;
(2) When operating on the frozen surface of any body of water; and
(3) When operating on land which the operator owns or is permitted to use.
G. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection 16,1 person may operate an ATV without a headlight and taillight between the hours of sunrise and sunset, provided:
(1) The ATV has an engine size of 90 cubic centimeters or less; and
(2) The ATV has 4 or more wheels.
25. Prohibition on sales without lights. Except as provided in this subsection, a person may not sell or offer to sell a new ATV unless that ATV is equipped with a functioning headlight and taillight. This subsection doen not apply to an ATV that:
A. Is a 2-wheeler off-road motorcycle;
B. Was manufactured prior to 1991; or
C. Has an engine size of 90 cubic centimeters or less and has 4 or more wheels.
A List Of ATV Clubs -
Join one of the many clubs that keep the trail riding the best there is in Maine. These clubs work hard so you are able to play hard. Let's give them our support.
Liability Laws -
Before you take to the fields and tear up some dirt, let's find out what the liabilities would be for such actions. Ride Safe!
Prohibited Acts -
So, you think you know everything? Well, there are some thing that you are not allowed to do on that ATV, so take a look befor you ride.
Registration, License and Training -
Now you know what to do, here is how to get started. Take a look at these rules and regulations before you head out on an extended ride.
Safe Riding Practices -
Ride Safe! The people who are on the trails with you expect to get home safely, and they are watching out for you so please watch out for them. Everyone wins when you Ride Safe!
Summary of ATV Laws -
A quick summary of the basic information that would be needed to start your ride in Maine
Summary Of Laws For Those Under 18 Years Old -
If you are thinking of coming to Maine, or if you live here, and you are expecting to let the kids have free access to that big machine, maybe you better think again. There are rules and regulations concerning them too you know.
Trail Map 1 - Aroostook Valley ATV Trail -
These maps are just a basic idea of trails that are easily accessible for you to ride on. Please obey the laws and don't go where you are clearly not allowed. This makes for some bad feelings with the landowners, and nobody needs that.
Trail Map 2 - Houlton to Phair Junction Trail -
Trail Map 3 - South LaGrange to Medford ATV Trail Map -
Trail Map 4 - Mount Blue State Park Map -
Trail Map 5 - Summerhaven Use Area Map -
Trail Map 6 - Jay to Farmington Trail Map -